Seasonality of Antarctic sea-ice and snow properties from autonomous systems

Stefanie.Arndt [ at ]


Studying seasonally varying snow and sea-ice properties in the ice-covered oceans is a key element for investigations of processes between atmosphere, sea ice, and ocean. A dominant characteristic of Antarctic sea ice is the year-round snow cover, which substantially impacts the sea-ice energy and mass budgets by, e.g., preventing surface melt in summer, and amplifying sea-ice growth through extensive snow-ice formation. However, substantial observational gaps in the description of year-round Antarctic pack ice and its snow cover lead to a limited understanding of important processes between atmosphere, sea ice and ocean. Here, we introduce a unique observational dataset comprised of a number of critical parameters relevant to the snow/ice and ice/ocean interface, recorded by a suite of snow and ice-mass balance buoys (IMBs) deployed in the Weddell Sea between 2013 and 2018. From these data we infer seasonal snow accumulation rates, which allow to describe the spatial distribution and temporal evolution of the Antarctic snowpack. Vertical temperature profiles from co-deployed IMBs are used to validate these findings, and to calculate energy budgets across the atmosphere-ocean boundary. Our results highlight that data from autonomous, ice-based platforms are a key element in better understanding sea-ice and snow properties, processes and their seasonal evolution.

Item Type
Conference (Poster)
Primary Division
Primary Topic
Research Networks
Publication Status
Event Details
Polar2018, 19 Jun 2018 - 23 Jun 2018, Davos, Switzerland.
Eprint ID
Cite as
Arndt, S. , Rossmann, L. , von Hülsen, L. , Hoppmann, M. and Nicolaus, M. (2018): Seasonality of Antarctic sea-ice and snow properties from autonomous systems , Polar2018, Davos, Switzerland, 19 June 2018 - 23 June 2018 .

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